ShopRepublic Founder Found Entrepreneurship In Opportunities

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By Angels Sastre (Founder, ShopRepublic) Editor's note: ShopRepublic founder Angels Sastre is co-hosting Founder Friday Barcelona on February 3, 2012. Join the wait list here.

For some reason, I have always been quite restless - I am not really a stay-at-home person. It must be my catalan-phoenician genes that always make me want to explore the world. I remember convincing my dad at 16 to go to the police station to sign up a permit for me to travel alone to France and cross the border by myself.

When I was 21, I had finished my degree in Business Administration and started working in a Dutch Multinational while studying Economics.

My first job was as an accountant and the monotony of the accounting periods, bored me to death but also the long hours at work and studying made me think I was killing my youth. The main reason I finished my studies, was because I saw an advertisement with a grant by the Catalan chamber of Commerce for the promotion of Catalan young graduates abroad.

I wanted to see the world, learn English and not waste my youth between four walls. So against all well-intentioned advice, I left my permanent contract, I applied and was accepted! Within months I was flying to Australia to work there in a Spanish multinational.

As expected, I loved the country and 1 year of scholarship became 3 years of work experience. It was a life changing experience, truly opened my eyes to the world and the cultural diversity. This planet is an amazing place, full of opportunities and interesting people to learn from.

I returned to Spain against all advice (again), in an economic downturn in 1994 with 20% unemployment similar to the one now. In 2 months I was working in an Asian Multinational and had a list of 21 Australian friends visiting me at my apartment in downtown Barcelona. One of them is now my husband. Thanks to him and his job, we have lived in Australia, Singapore and USA for another 9 years.

In each one of these countries, I had to re-invent myself and look for opportunities, so entrepreneurship came almost naturally, wanted something to give me the flexibility to change the countries and fit in time with my young children. In Singapore started a textile export company from Asia to Spain and the United States started an online travel agency for small groups, as they wanted to travel to Spain.

We decided to return to Barcelona to enjoy our extended family and to educate our children with some of their roots. In Barcelona, I started working for Grupo Intercom, where I spent 2 and a half years as an analyst for new online businesses and attracting investors, along with my actual business partner, Giuseppe Perri.

After analysing nearly 1000 internet projects, a year ago, we decided to pursue our dreams and develop our own project, ShopRepublic with deals and discount codes from online shops all over the world.

With it, we want to be your knowledge source for all your online shopping, offering all online stores delivering to your country with discounts, with store ratings of other users and a community of "social shoppers".

Today we have agreements with over 7300 stores worldwide and have 50,000 active discounts, helping consumers realize that buying online is more comfortable and economical.

Editor's note: Got a question for our guest blogger? Leave a message in the comments below. About the guest blogger: Angels Sastre is co-founder of ShopRepublic. She is a citizen of the world, a technology junk, and in love with her 3 children and husband. Follow her on Twitter at @angeliufus.